Rep. Tom Hackbarth's loaded-gun story unravelling
When Rep. Tom Hackbarth was confronted by St. Paul Police as he lurked in the Planned Parenthood parking lot with a loaded gun on his hip, he gave a perfectly reasonable explanation.
Authorities want to open the door on Hackbarth's mystery date.
He wasn't a crazed anti-abortionist -- he was simply laying in wait for a woman he met online.
Well, the plot has thickened as to the identity of Hackbarth's mysterious online girlfriend.
Hackbarth told cops that he was just trying to see if his lady's car was where she said it would be and accidentally parked in the Planned Parenthood lot. The police checked on the name of the woman he provided and made a puzzling discovery -- she doesn't seem to exist.
Around the same time, an anonymous tipster called the cops with a hunch about who Hackbarth was really looking for -- the tipster provided the name of a female Minnesota Department of Agriculture worker.
When police contacted the woman, she was as confused as they were.
"The woman told us that she knows him but has no idea what he would be doing in the area," says police rep Andy Skoogman.
The new mystery woman does live near the Planned Parenthood, but Hackbarth denies he was gunning for her that night. He's sticking to his original story.
Police were weirded out enough to turn the investigation over to the St. Paul City Attorney's office. They will determine if any charges should be filed.
Hackbarth has already given up a powerful position as the House Environment and Natural Resources Committee as a result of this strange incident.